Book Review: Windfall by Jennifer E. Smith

Summary: Alice doesn’t believe in luck—at least, not the good kind. But she does believe in love, and for some time now, she’s been pining for her best friend, Teddy. On his eighteenth birthday—just when it seems they might be on the brink of something—she buys him a lottery ticket on a lark. To their astonishment, he wins $140 million, and in an instant, everything changes.

At first, it seems like a dream come true, especially since the two of them are no strangers to misfortune. As a kid, Alice won the worst kind of lottery possible when her parents died just over a year apart from each other. And Teddy’s father abandoned his family not long after that, leaving them to grapple with his gambling debts. Through it all, Teddy and Alice have leaned on each other. But now, as they negotiate the ripple effects of Teddy’s newfound wealth, a gulf opens between them. And soon, the money starts to feel like more of a curse than a windfall.

As they try to find their way back to each other, Alice learns more about herself than she ever could have imagined . . . and about the unexpected ways in which luck and love sometimes intersect.

Release Date: May 2017
Age Group: YA
Source: Review Copy from Publisher
Reviewed By: Nat

I decided this year I was going to try new authors and so far, they have been killing the game! I absolutely LOVED Jennifer Smith's writing style and this book is simply a gem. The clever book graphics, title and even the last page, I guarantee will suck you in.

Let me begin with the title: Windfall

A piece of unexpected good fortune, typically one that involves receiving a large amount of money.

I'll admit it, I learned a new word. Just based on the book summary, I wasn't sure this was my kind of read, I was afraid it would be too slow. After all, it is a far cry from my typical dystopian pleasure but I am excited to report I was totally & completely wrong!
Plain and simple I loved Alice, loved Teddy and even loved the Lottery. Each character was well-rounded and had their own uniqueness. I really never got board and as the story progressed I started thinking of how several of these characters needed a novella (or even their own story)!

Who hasn't sat and daydreamed about what they would do if they won the lottery? And I don't even play the lottery, although this has me considering adding scratch-offs to my Christmas cards, thoughts? tacky or cool?

Overall this was an excellent YA novel. It was innocent, clean and carries several themes that teens will find relatable; from family problems to peer interactions to evolving friendships, this book has it all. 

I am pretty confident that Windfall will be one of my top 5 favorites of 2017.

>>> Pre-order a signed & personalized copy of WINDFALL HERE and submit your receipt HERE, and receive a prize pack filled with lucky things! <<<

Jennifer E. Smith is the author of seven novels for young adults, including The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight. She earned a master’s degree in creative writing from the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, and her work has been translated into thirty-three languages. She lives in New York City. Follow her on Twitter at @JenESmith or visit her at

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